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Monday, July 20, 2009

Land of mystic mountains!

Kodai Kanal has always been my favorite destination, ever since I visited it as a kid. The beautiful mountains, the lush green jungles, the placid lake, the lovely mist, and the beautiful waterfalls always had remained etched in my memory. I had a chance to visit Kodai a few years back with my friends. A log of that trip is here. But it seems, I never had enough of Kodai, and my craving to visit that place is still the same :D

Kodai has always been a part of my family favorites. And guess, Ritesh had got so bored of listening to the dinner-time-kodai-stories, that he decided to visit it and become a part of the memoirs recitation :D. So when his parents were coming to stay with us for few days, we planned for this much awaited trip to Kodai Kanal.


Ever since we got our new car, we have actually never travelled anywhere without it, so this trip also had to be by car :-). We started on the friday evening and reached Salem at night for a halt, as we don't drive in the night (reason being, there is absolutely nothing that you can see in the night...driving in day is so much more interesting). And next day early morning drive from Salem to Kodai was all the justification we needed for the night stay at Salem :-).

When we reached Kodai, the scene was right out of a fairy tale. It was mist & fog everywhere. And the small town was abuzz with activity. And the best was a view from the lawn of our hotel. We just went all gaga over it...and stayed up at the lawn taking pictures and breathing in the fresh air and purging our lungs of all the pollution and toxic gases. The climate in Kodai in June was just amazing. You see a beautiful sunrise and nice "dhoop" in the mornings, then by the time its afternoon, the clouds come down as if to give you a hug, the late afternoon, there is slight showers, and then it miraclously clears up and you see twinkling stars in the sky.

We spent three full days in Kodai, each day exploring an area around Kodai that is not so well known, so as to avoid a lot of crowd. And yes, every day was followed by an evening ...cycling around the lake. Its one of the best activity you can do. Its healthy and you can take lot of beautiful pcitures around the lake. The rest of the evening was well spent at cards and food at the Kodai Club. :-)

We just enjoyed every bit of our time spent in Kodai and now Ritesh also has a craving to visit Kodai again and again...so watch out for more travelogues coming! :-)



Facts
Bangalore to Kodai - 480 kms
Route: Bangalore – Hosur - Krishnagiri – Dharmapuri – Salem – Bhavani - Erode - Kangeyam - Dharmapuram - Palani - Kodai
Kodai - Palani - Dharmapuram - Kangeyam - Mechcheri - Dharmapuri - Krishnagiri - Hosur - Bangalore
Google Map
Places to stay: Villa Retreat - Official Site, My review on trip advisor
The Kodai Club - Official Site
Best time to visit: April to June & September to October
Places to see: The Kodai Lake, Pine Forest, 12 Mile circuit and view points along the way, Coakers walk, Berijam Lake, any drive coz its so beautiful to pass through mist-ful roads and we are still exploring better places! :-)

Suggestions
Try to avoid the weekend rush and go on a weekday.
Better have your own car, so as to move around easily.
There are a lot of hiking and trekking trails in and around Kodai. Get more information from the DFO, office.
I have come to know of a trekking trail from Kodai to Munnar, and it sounds amazing. Me and Ritesh are waiting for the calendar to change, so that we can do it the coming january! :-)
There is this site 360Inn, they have an interesting and off-beat lineage of organized tour. This too is on our list and will do it soon!

...of warm hugs, subtle kisses n family reunions

Last night me and Ritesh went to pick up a friend coming from Spain. We had to wait for around 1 and a half hours for them to come out.

And during this wait we witnessed so many families and friends reunite. It was a very exhilarating experience. The long waits...the searching eyes...then a glimpse of their loved ones...and then a sudden smile...the rush to meet them...the hugs...the kisses...the laughs...the questions...the compliments...the sound of shutter to capture the moment forever...the jumping around...wow!!!

That reminded me of the times when Ritesh came to Tokyo to meet me and when I cam back from Tokyo... :-)

TGDC - Top 100

Finally the cat is out of the bag. Check out the top 100 couples for TGDC.

zaheer bakshi & zainab bakshi
vishal & anushk
vamsi vanka & charukesi ramadurai
unny radhakrishnan & bindhu unny
tirthankar basu & mampa basu
sudhanshu jain & aastha jain
sowmya & guru
sivakumar & ansuya
shilpi aurora & varun mehra
shaishav singh & norah singh
sajjan devaiah & ambika kariappa
thomas anand & shilpy
rupak venugopal & deblina ghosh
roohshad garda & zinaida mascarenhas
ranganathan srinath & meenakshi srinath
radhika raj & bharath belliappa
pushkar sham kulkarni & mugdha kulkarni
prafful agrawal & tara agrawal
paramjeet singh & supreet dhiman
neil sequeira & yuliya glushchenko
moiz gabajiwala & zahabiya gabajiwala
mohsin khan & mainu kalita
maya & ramesh
leena nair & sairaam rai
kartik jain & vaishali jain
joseph radhik & namrata poddar
jomy jose & asha puthran
jignesh d shah & taru j shah
' jeevan joseph mathew' & 'neetu jeevan mathew'
'janice pearl d'souza & $andhan chowdhury
imtiaz ahmad khan & sonali gupta
hina rajpal & santosh santhanam
hemant kumar tiwari & mrinalini tiwari
gregory jude mascarenhas & ruby mascarenhas
garima nahar kale & sidhanshu kale
danish contractor & leela muthana
bopanna c p & joshine antony
bhakti thakare & harpreet grover
bala murali & cauvery thimmaiah
ateet jayaswal & supriya goswami
arvind & anita
arush vohra & sarika sehrawat vohra
aneesh bhasin & dipna daryanani
ananda kumar dendukuri & nischala valli
anamika singh & pawan saxena
alvito fernandez & marsha nesamani
' aayushi awasthi & anchal kumar srivastava
aarti dayal & harsh vardhan
aadil bandukwala & saniya bandukwala
swapnil zarekar & shilpi gupta zarekar
ajay jain & anubhuti rana
saurabh uttam & divya uttam
amit sharma & ankita bajaj
abhijit shukla & vashita
deepak shivlal jethwa & priti
deepa baruah & dhrubajyoti baruah
rajat gaur & shelly
vatsal d. jogani & khushboo v. jogani
sapna bhavnani & arijit datta
harish chawla & priyanka chopra
dr. praveen jacob & dr. swati mogra
mini jacob & jason jacob
manoj agarwal & ambika agarwal
varun anand sinha & riddhi anil parekh
supratik choudhury & anindita choudhury
arvind passey & sangita passey
anand majumdar & sheetal rai
dr. gaurav chhabra & elena kasnatscheewa
girish dariyav karnawat & purvi patel
ritesh shrivastava & kosha shah
sai karthik madabhushi & anvita varshney
navin gulia & deepa gulia
harsha koda & prabha koda
mandeep mahanta & bhavika sharma mahanta
harish kukreja & pavithra ghanashyam
anirban biswas & shifra menezes
vikram srinivasan & chitra vikram
mohamed raffi & poorvi daxini
priya fonseca moizuddin & hashim moizuddin
ram & rakhi
amith prabhu & mrunmaiy abroal
aditi mathur & anupam mathur
anjali jain & hemant aneja
amit singh & jasleen chopra
harish mohan & babija d
priya ramakrishnan & gaurav phanasgaonkar
narayan mallapur & radhika mallapur
bhanu vashishta & naysa ahuja
vineet malhotra & ranjeeta malhotra
kartik kesarker & nidhi singhvi
' santosh abraham & nidhi dev
sushant kumar & sweta
pooja ganeriwala & abhishek kadam
rajat malhotra & payal malhotra
deepak raghunath & aishwarya belliappa
b a pavan biddappa & bollamma machaiah
ashish & paavani
kapil bhati & dr. reenu bhati
rishi kapoor & poonam kapoor
prashant jain & swati jain

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Nods!!!

I was in a training for the whole of last week (sigh...!). And me with my restlessness had to figure out new new activities to keep myself interested :D. One such activity I engaged myself into was to notice people's expression for different situations.

The expression that caught my attention this time was "Nodding" of different styles. Nodding is the most explicit expression to show you understood. Very trivial to notice so much, but at length, when you don't have anything else to do, they seemed quiet interesting.

The most common style of nodding is to nod up & down, which universally means a "yes". Another one is to nod from left to right or vice versa, which universally means a "no". But, I found it being used interchangeably with the first one to mean a "yes".

There exists another version of the left-to-right or right-to-left nod. This one is at a faster pace, which definitely implies a certain "no" (atleast from what I have seen till date).

And then there is this very very interesting, and most ambiguous nod: the pendulum nod, swinging the head in rotary motion resembling a dancing head. Can anyone tell me what this nod is universally taken as?

Sitting in the training session, I saw another classification in the nods apart from all the above nods. Nods that are completely meaningless. There are people whose minds wander off at far off places and their heads are engaged in a systematic, controlled & periodic nodding of any type of their choice. These are mere acts to imitate or, better, hide their meanderings. And to my surprise, I could see that people are becoming more & more matured in their techniques of nodding, to make it seem realistic.

You have noticed some more varieties or flavors of nods, do chip in! :-)

Happy nodding!!!

Monday, May 04, 2009

Knock! Knock!

Anybody still there?
I know it's been too long.
I have been too negligent.
But there is another truth as well.
I have been very guilty of this as well.
I have felt miserable and frustrated.
And have tried for long, to come back and do what I love a lot.
And finally the blogger within me has taken the front seat.
And I am sure, I am capable enough to keep this going now.
I hope to see you all regularly again! :-)

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Odds at each other's side!

Last week, I was travelling to my hometown by train. It made a halt at a place, I don't which station it was as it was really dark and I was inside a new "postered" Rajdhani Express. But I still could see clearly the train standing right next to ours. As we slowly swayed past the train, one stark reality hit me. There was a sparsely filled AC coach with people sleeping with all the leisures in the world. And right next to it was a general compartment, overflowing with people, people who don't know what leisure is, people who have to even fight for the little place to sit clumsily. This is the harsh reality of India. The great divide, with which every passing second is getting wider. Though its has always been present, in and around me, but don't know why it moved me that moment so much as to make me feel like crying.

Where will this end? Would those hard working souls just persih without being rewarded? I don't know. All I can see is a bleak future. How much ever the better becomes best, the true victory of a nation is tp lift the worse to atleast good!

Monday, August 11, 2008

So Long....

So long....so long I had stayed away from my camera...I don't know why and how it happened. But a refreshing break came to me in form of a pleasant surprise. One night I got a call from my uncle, to join them on a trip to Shravanbelgola. Oh, I just can't describe how I felt at that moment. I was like..."Finally my hands and my eyes will be put to some worth" :D .

But I was worried too, as I had not taken photographs for months. I didn't know that I did remember photography, or would it have evaporated out of me. But once my hands were on the shutter button and my eyes looking through the viewfinder, nothing was stopping me. And I so very enjoyed doing what I used to love a few months back. Here are just a few shots from the trip. Do tell me how you found them. I would be uploading the entire set soon on my Flickr. So, watch out.







Sunday, July 20, 2008

She Blogs...

Ouch...! That really hurt. I heard these words and started wondering: am I really blogging? I used to take such pride in that some time ago (rather some years ago...sigh). Whom am I lying to, by saying that i blog? How can I betray me, myself and my blog? I have been making unfulfilled promises from long that I will get back to it. But I haven't. I can no longer be called in the category of bloggers (...sobs...). I feel so ashamed, angered on myself. How did I let this happen?

Is it my laziness or my indifference or just a stagnation of events in my life? I will have to sit and think about the right blend of reasons for this misfortune of mine. And this time I wont make promises, instead let the time tell what I finally made out of this mess.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Why are they doing this to me???

It was a beautiful evening, with clouds on top and a chilly breeze. I took my kinetic and started from my home, though for some work, but that was an excuse, what I really wanted was a speed ride in this climate, but but but... Why the hell do they have to spoil my speed ride???

They recently laid new roads in my entire area, beautiful roads...attracting and enticing and goading me to accelerate. But you suddenly realize that its all to just lure you and out of no where comes the monstrous, grizzly, huge and highly irritating speed breakers, aaaggggghhhhhh!!!!!

The road builders in Bangalore are really sadist, they lay beautifully good roads, but they just dont know how to make speed breakers. The speed breakers are narrow horizontally and rising to such heights that it really bogs you out of your mind to take your vehicle through them. Specially my poor little kinetic :(

And there goes my romantic, thrilling little speed ride! :(

Monday, March 24, 2008

Jungle Mein Mangal...

Recently we had a trip to Bandhavgarh (a Tiger Reserve in M.P.). We had booked a tree-house for us to stay and were expecting an adventurous trip. With the adventure in our minds and moods we set off from Bhopal to Bandhavgarh, via Katni. The ride from Katni to Tala (District of Bandhavgarh) was all the more convincing for the adventure we thought of facing and specially the remoteness of the tree-house resort sent some warning signals to our minds.




Once reaching our destination, our adventure started to shatter bit by bit. We were greeted by the staff present there with utmost hospitality and yeah the regular etiquettes that you see in any of the 3-4-5 star hotels. We were taken down a trail to our room, which was hidden amidst trees and completely isolated. The moment we entered, we were taken by awe. The room was very well designed, all the luxuries that you could ask for, and yet conserving the basic essence of being in a jungle. The best part was, one of the walls of the room was totally glass and opened up into a deck with two lounge chairs. Oh man, it was such a romantic place. I couldn't have asked for a better place.




And there was one more blessing in disguise, only BSNL network. So we were completely off mobiles and isolated in that small place. No STD PCOs and neither did the resort have any phone, so totally off the hook. How much I loved that peace and being in the arms of the nature. In our rooms the only sounds that we could hear was wind, chirping of birds and some stray sounds of animals roaming around. It was a complete bliss. Specially the nights, the sky was like a heavily studded diamond plate. Have never seen so many stars in my life. It was just amazing to lie in the lounge chair and look at the sky and stars for hours together.

Nights were also beautiful coz the place was lit up using lanterns (the usual kerosene lanterns) and not bulbs. The trail to each room was decked up with lanterns at regular distances, which looked like a beaded strand of necklace from far away. And sometimes, if you are lucky enough, you can hear those jungle bands and songs from nearby local tribes.





The jeep safaris into the national park were too exciting too. It was fall time and the colors of the trees were awesome. The feel of being inside a jungle and be able to watch the activities happening there is just amazing. We took two jeep safaris into the national park, and finally in the second one we spotted a tigress (a pregnant one!!). Wow such a majestic animal it is.






To top it all, the service that you get is amazing, they literally treat you as kings and queens (of the jungle...hahaha). The food was amazing too, not the usual 3-4-5 star types, but a good deal home-like. In short, it was a perfect "hideaway" vacation which we enjoyed to the best. And I would recommend all of you to try out that place.

For more information visit http://www.treehousehideaway.com/